Five great Irish podcasts we've just discovered this autumn 2018

Irish podcasts, it has to be said, are having a moment.

Once again it seems the old “gift of the gab” is serving us well as countless new Irish-made podcasts are popping up with every passing month. More importantly, though, we're not only producing the quantity, but we’re producing superb quality too. The proof is in the huge listenership that many Irish shows are currently amassing, and in the kudos they are getting from both Irish media and those further afield.

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by all that’s on offer at the moment, so here are five of our current favourites. These are shows we’ve only recently discovered, but have been enjoying with much fervour since.

In the shower with Taz and Marcus

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In The Shower with Taz and Marcus is a 15-minute podcast that explores many of life’s most random questions; everything from “why do we yawn?” to “why do we never see baby pigeons?”. The duo’s banter is sweet and their genuine curiosity about, well, everything, is incredibly endearing. It provides perfect easy-listening fodder for when you’re doing your day-to-day bits.

Note: Correct me if I’m wrong, but if you listen carefully to Marcus’ voice, you may agree that it sounds exactly like John Smith from Pocahontas, if John Smith had an Irish accent.

Listen when: cooking, cleaning, commuting, or *in the shower*

Phoning it in

When it comes to podcasts to make you chuckle, Phoning it in is our current favourite. Created by Dave Coffey, the podcast essentially takes on the ruse of a Joe Duffy-style radio show; with a rotating panel of Irish comedians, actors and improv talent who take on the role of the “callers”. It’s worth bearing in mind that the entire show is completely improvised, with talk show host Coffey introducing his guests and their “complaints” without them having done any preparation.

The quality of the quickfire responses throughout is a testament to both the host and his talented guests, whose stories range from the thigh-slappingly funny to the how-did-they-even-think-that-up bizarre.

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Listen when: the Monday Blues strike

Smart Casual

Fashion is a personal thing, and the clothes we wear can depend on our personality, our mood, our culture and of course, the weather. Personal style, on the other hand, relates to how clothes make us feel, and how they express who we are inside. This is precisely what the Smart Casual podcast explores, and you won’t get two more style-savvy hosts than IMAGE digital editor Dominique McMullan, Digital Leader Niamh O'Donoghue and IMAGE fashion director Marie Kelly.

A podcast both for fashion addicts and anyone who has an interest in the industry in general, this show gives you an opportunity to consider your own personal style as you hear guest panellists from the industry speak on a range of related topics.

Listen when: on a cosy weekend morning with a big cup of tea

Pantisocracy

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Ok, from the get-go we’ll say we’re pretty late to the party on this one, but better late than never, eh? And when it comes to podcast series this good, we’re just delighted to have found it at all.

Pantisocracy (originally featured on RTÉ Radio 1) sees “Queen of Ireland” Panti Bliss in conversation with a range of intriguing guests (everyone from singers and actors to scientists and athletes feature). Throughout each episode, our host and her guests share stories which range from the jaw-droppingly shocking, to the flat-out hilarious, alongside interjections of song and performances throughout. It’s a true cabaret for the times we live in.

Listen when: before bed. Even adults enjoy a good storytime

The 80% with Esther O’Moore Donohoe

We all have an 80 percenter in our lives. You know, a person who is doing really well for themselves; who you are 80% delighted for, but if you’re being honest, you are 20% seething-with-jealousy over, too. These are precisely the kind of people that Esther O’Moore Donohoe interviews in her podcast series, with all sorts of well-known “80 percenters” taking to the mic, including Amy Huberman, Stefanie Preissner, Caroline Foran and our own Sophie White.

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In each episode, we hear Esther invite her guests into honest, frank and hold-nothing back conversations; peppered with brilliant insights and stories throughout. In short, it’s the perfect balance between “if-I-can-do-it-you-can-do-it” inspiration, and “don’t-believe-the-hype” realism.

Listen when: your life needs a kick in the right direction


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